And for every scoundrel they blast to bits, how many stories like this accrue?
Tue, Nov 29, 2005 http://www.wausaudailyherald.com/wdhlocal/293916218726163.shtml
Gun in girl's death had been locked
Child's mother had taken precautions, authorities say; findings reveal 'tragic accident'
By Jessica Bock
Wausau Daily Herald firstname.lastname@example.org
TOMAHAWK - Micayla Ellis' mother took the suggested precautions with a gun in her home - she locked it up, hid the key and put the ammunition in different locations - but it still wasn't enough to stave off her children's curiosity.
While off from classes at Tomahawk Elementary School last Wednesday before Thanksgiving, Micayla ended up with a small-caliber handgun. It accidentally went off, and she entered Saint Joseph's Hospital in Mashfield in critical condition from a single gunshot wound to the head. The young girl died the next day.
Family and friends buried Micayla on Monday, and authorities used preliminary findings from an autopsy to determine that her death was accidental. Her older brother was in the same room when the gun went off.
"It was just a tragic accident," Lincoln County Sheriff Tom Koth said Monday. "The kids had some time on their hands. With the curiosity they had, they were able to locate all of the components."
In 2002, nearly 800 children ages 14 and younger were treated in hospital emergency rooms for accidental gun-related injuries, according to Safe Kids Worldwide, a network of organizations that distributes gun locks to prevent accidental childhood injury. In 2001, 72 children died from those injuries.Ê
The sheriff's departments in Marathon and Lincoln counties, as well as the Tomahawk Police Department, have free gun locks available to parents.
Nearly two-thirds of parents who own firearms and have school-age children believe they keep their firearms safely away from their children. But one study found that when a gun was in the home, 75 percent to 80 percent of first- and second-graders knew where it was kept.
Few children under age 8 can distinguish between real and toy guns. Children as young as 3 are strong enough to pull the trigger of many handguns, Safe Kids Worldwide says.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has determined that the most effective way to prevent gun-related deaths and injuries to children and adolescents is to remove guns from their homes and communities.